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Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs:
Douw

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[This information is from Vol. I, pp. 383-391 of Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs, edited by Cuyler Reynolds (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1911). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 929.1 R45. Some of the formatting of the original, especially in lists of descendants, may have been altered slightly for ease of reading.]

The coat-of-arms of the Douw family, as it was depicted upon the window of the old Dutch church in Albany, New York, and as was borne by Volckert Jansen Douw, is as follows: Field: Argent, on a fess azure a demi-female robed gules, holding in her dexter hand a bird sable, behind an anchor sable. In chief on dexter a tree proper, and on sinister a mountain proper. In base a bird sejant, with wings displayed sable. Lambrequin crimson, lining white. Crest: Over an esquire's helmet a wreath azure, surmounted by a cross-crosslet with a ring azure. Motto: Cruci dum fido spiro.

The family descent is traced to Jan Douw, of Leuwarden, province of Friesland, Holland, who was a burgher. He had, besides other children, the following:

  1. Volckert, married Dorothe Janse Van Breestede while in Holland; came to America and settled in the Rensselaerwyck colony in 1638; died 1681 (see forward).
  2. Neeltje, married (first) Jan Jansen Van Ditmarsen, ancestor of the Ditmars family; (second) Louis Joriszen Van Der Veer, in Teal't, January 9, 1650.
  3. Andries, who came to this country, married, and settled in New York City.
  4. Lysbeth, married Johannes Van Eps, one of the earliest settlers of Schenectady.

(II) Volckert Jansen Douw, son of Jan Douw, of Holland, was a captain in the Dutch army when driven from his home in Leuwarden by the persecutions waged against the Mennonites. He fled to Friedrichstadt, Denmark, taking his family along, and intent upon finding a place to live where religious liberty was accorded every one. When the same feeling began to make headway there as had been experienced by him in his former home, he set sail for America. He settled first at Catskill, but remained only a short time, when he decided to join those who were planting the colony of Rensselaerwyck. The exact date of his reaching there is not known, but he is mentioned in 1638 as a prominent member of the little settlement, and it was not long before he became an extensive landholder. He owned more than one brewery, and had a house-lot on the southwest corner of Broadway and State street. It has been said that he procured this site, still in the family in 1911, in a peculiar manner. The story is that, living on Papsknae Island, on the east bank of the Hudson, below Albany, he came to town regularly to attend service at the Dutch church, located in the middle of the street where Broadway now intersects State street, and he required a place of shelter between the morning and afternoon services and a shed for his horse. He therefore acquired the place adjoining the smithy, standing on the corner, and although it was but a trivial sum to pay for the object in those days, it is now the center of the business section of the Capital City, and a most prominent corner. This seems hardly true, without knowing other particulars, in the light of the record that he bought the corner, known to-day as the Douw building, directly from the Indians in 1640, which conveyance he confirmed to his widow in 1693, for the corner-stone of the first of two churches erected on that site was laid on June 2, 1656. However, he was deacon of that church, and much concerned in its affairs, especially in the work of erecting the new edifice, after the one established in 1642 near Fort Orange (Steamboat Square) became too congested as the population grew. His brewery was diagonally opposite the site of the present post-office, and the lot extended for several hundred feet to the Hudson river. This property was sold in 1675 to his nephew, Harman Rutgers. His other, or summer home, was on Papsknae Island. This was a decidedly disadvantageous location for a house, for in 1666 there was an extraordinary flood, causing the island where he dwelt to be completely inundated, and sweeping away houses, breweries (of which he had two immense ones), cattle, and all his personal property. In this way many of the valued family records were lost, but the inmates managed to escape. The only property rescued was a small round table and his colt, which were carried by the swift current through the hoist-door of his home into the second story. It was in this year that he bought a tract on the mainland, situated on the east bank of the Hudson, and to this day known to boatmen as Douw's Point. It is a locality where there has been considerable trouble yearly in the spring when on the breaking up of the ice, crowded by that forcing its way from the Mohawk, ice gorges have been wont to form at the bar thus created, known as the Overslaugh. Douw's Point, in changing the course of the current, was responsible for these conditions, and necessitated dredging the channel nearly every year.

Volckert J. Douw owned much land at Esopus, and was one of the original patentees of that settlement. On some occasions he bought in conjunction with his partner, Jan Thomase, other times individually. They had bought Apjen's (Papsknae, or Little Monkey) Island together. Douw bought Constapel's Island, lying opposite the township of Bethlehem, just south of Albany, half of which he sold in 1677 to Pieter Winne, another prominent early settler. In 1672 he owned Schutter's Island, below Beeren Island, fourteen miles south of Albany, which he sold to Barent Pieterse Coeymans, from whom the town of Coeymans derives its name.

He was made deacon of the Dutch Reformed church in 1654, about twelve years after its projection by Patroon Kiliaen Van Rensselaer, who sent over to his colony Dominie Megapolensis, the pioneer in church work in the province of New York outside of New Amsterdam. This was some sixty years before any other church was established in Albany, the English church coming next, in 1712, and its first edifice, St. Peter's church, was opened for worship November 25, 1717. From 1654 to 1660 he was a magistrate, and in those days they were the most learned men of the community. At various times he was attorney and guardian for several large estates. He occupied the position of commissary, and continuously that of Indian commissioner. He made his will in 1680, and died in 1681, at Albany.

Volckert Jansen Douw married, in New Amsterdam, April 19, 1650, Dorothe Janse Van Breestede, of Breestede, Denmark (now Germany). She died in Albany, November 22, 1701. Children:

  1. Jonas Volckert, married (first), September 20, 1683, Magdalena Quackenbush; (second), April 24, 1696, Catrina Witbeck (see forward).
  2. Andries, married (first), June 24, 1685, Annetje; (second), June 23, 1697, Elsje Hanse; (third) October 21, 1702, Lydia De Meyer; (fourth), in New York, February 24, 1708, Adriana Vendergrift.
  3. Volckertje, married Claes Van Brockhoven.
  4. Dorothe.
  5. Catrina (Caatje), married, April 30, 1684, Hendrick Jans Oothout.
  6. Engeltje (Angelica), married, about 1683, Andries Jans Witbeck.
  7. Hendrick, married, October 3, 1697, Neeltje Myndertse Van Yveren, widow of Captain Marten Gerritsen Van Bergen, who died before 1704.
  8. Elsje.
  9. Rebecca.
  10. Volckert, married, November 16, 1701, Margareta Van Tricht.
  11. Greitje, married Gerrit Teunis Van Vechten.

(III) Captain Jonas Volckert Douw, son of Captain Volckert Jansen Douw and Dorothe Janse Van Breestede, was a lieutenant of foot in the year 1700, and was later promoted to the rank of captain. He was born in Greenbush (Rensselaer, N. Y.), and dying October 7, 1736, was buried in the family burial ground of Wolvenhoeck, at Douw's Point. He married (first), at Beverwyck, September 20, 1683, Magdalena, daughter of Pieter Quackenbush and his wife Martje, by whom he had four children. After her death he married, April 24, 1696, at Schenectady, Catrina, daughter of Jan Thomas Witbeck and widow of Jacob Sanders Glen, of Schenectady, by whom no children. Children:

  1. Marytje, baptized October 19, 1684.
  2. Volckert, baptized November 14, 1686, at Albany, died April 17, 1711.
  3. Dorothe, baptized June 22, 1689.
  4. Petrus, baptized, Albany, March 24, 1692; married, October 8, 1717, Anna Van Rensselaer; died August 21, 1775.

(IV) Captain Petrus Douw, son of Jonas Douw and Magdalena Petrus Quackenbush, was baptized at Albany, March 24, 1692, and died at his home in Greenbush, August 21, 1775. He was the sole surviving son of his father, and became a man of great importance throughout the province. He was a member of the twenty-seventh council and general assembly of the Province of New York, "begun and holden at the house of Jacob Dyckman in the Out Ward of the City of New York."

On the eastern bank of the Hudson river, about a mile below Albany, was a point of land, which was known in 1717 as Wolven Hoeck, because it was infested with packs of wolves. It was a beautiful location otherwise, covered with a heavy growth of elms and sycamores of enormous growth, and it was there that the wolves came down to the shore to drink. Captain Petrus Douw selected this spot for the location of his home, and building a house there in 1724, named it Wolvenhoeck. His great-great-granddaughter, Mrs. Mary Lanman Douw Ferris, has made considerable research to learn all she could about the family homestead, which descended for many generations in the family, and from these discoveries one may form an excellent impression of the quaintness of the old place. The original house was a story and a half high, and well spread out on the ground. It was built of wood, and bricks brought from Holland, it is said, as ballast in a sailing vessel, and the roof was shingled with white fir. The top of the gable wall was notched into corbel steps, and the black fore bricks of the kiln were laid, alternating with yellow ones, to make checks on the gable fronts. The roof sloped from the ridge pole and dormer windows broke its uniformity. The heavy, wooden, outside shutters swung upon massive iron hinges, with a crescent cut near the top to admit the early light. Above the front door was a free-stone slab with the initials "P. D., A. V. R.," cut into it, they being the first letters of his own and his wife's name. The front wall was pierced at places for the use of muskets in case of a sudden emergency, for at that period there were frequent attacks at the hands of savage Indians; in fact, a particularly desperate raid was once made upon the place by what were called the River Indians, coming from below. The front door of this house was divided into two parts across the middle. The upper half, which usually swung wide open in the summer months, had two bull's-eyes of glass, so as to light the hallway, and was graced with a heavy, brass knocker, brought from Leuwarden. The lower half had a heavy latch. The great hall was to some extent a living room, and through its center was the hoist door, through which wheat was hoisted by employing a crane, for storage in the loft, for every house of any pretensions had its cock-loft within the steep roof, where house slaves slept, and also used for storage purposes. A little to one side was a staircase with a flight of steps leading to the loft. Over the front door was a shelf with steps by which it might be reached, and here was placed the tobacco box. The rooms were wainscoted to a height of about three feet, excepting the diningroom, which had a chair-board running about it. The windows were of small, diamond-shaped panes of glass, set into leaden frames. Chintz calico formed the curtains, put up without cornices. The only carpet in service was in the parlor. The chairs were stiff, straight, high-backed, covered with haircloth, similarly to the claw-footed sofa, which were all ornamented with triple rows of brass nails. These articles of furniture were of San Domingo mahogany, and reckoned of value in the present age. Very interesting were the stand with a turning top, and a small table with claw feet, holding the family Bible, in which accurate records were entered by father and son. Hanging on the whitewashed walls were oil portraits of those left in the Fatherland, some painted by Frans Hals and Gerhardus Douw. The tiles in the chimney-jamb were laid in cement, made from powdered clamshells, displaying pictorial designs of scriptural nature, brought from Leuwarden. The fireplace was so large that one might easily stand therein, and it held a hickory log eight feet long; the brass shovel and tongs standing at the corners, brought from Harlem. Over the mantel was a long glass separated in three divisions by strips of moulding, and alongside hung the bellows. On each side of the chimney was a sort of alcove with low benches. Between the front windows was a sconce. The Dutch tea-table stood in one corner, upon it spread a linen cloth, once the property of Anneke Jans, Mrs. Douw's great-grandmother, The china was of delicate texture and was valued highly, for it was brought all the way from China in the sailing vessel of Captain Stewart Dean, of Albany, on the first journey ever made to that far country by a vessel docked at Albany. It was made to order, with initials worked into the pattern. The napkins in use were spun at home. These and other napery were kept in an oaken, iron-bound chest. Back of the living-room was the "meister's bedroom," containing an enormous bedstead, with its four corner posts handsomely carved and an elaborate canopy above, a fringed valance to match hanging below. The sacking bottom was pierced with holes bound with linen thread, and by this means it was stretched by a stout rope to corresponding pegs in the framework. Back of this room was a small library and office, a large mahogany desk with numerous pigeon-holes and books above, being the principal piece of furniture beyond the heavy, comfortable armchair. Off the library was the dood kamer, or death chamber, where those of the family who died were placed until the funeral ceremony was held. These ceremonies were made events of great importance, and the little silver spoons, marked with initials, given on that occasion, are still treasured as heirlooms. It is related that when Judge Douw died in 1801, a keg of wine which he had prepared for that specific occasion was brought out. He had it spiced so carefully under his directions that many of the guests, having imbibed too freely, had to be carried to their homes on ox-sleds.

The Wolvenhoeck house was surrounded by a circular stockade. It stood twelve feet high, and was made of oak posts which had been pointed and bolted to transverse timbers, having a gate, pointed on both the upper and lower sides, which was raised by weights in a gallows frame. Many Indian treaties were executed inside this little stockade, and at such times the chiefs and their squaws slept on their buffalo robes inside the limits, while their band found shelter under the trees along the river bank.

It was while he was living here that General Abercrombie's army was encamped in 1758 opposite his house, while recruiting before proceeding to Ticonderoga. They dug from the steep banks to form places wherein to hang their kettles and perform their cooking, and these holes were pointed out as curiosities until nearly 1900, when the elements and improvements of the river had eradicated most of them.

Captain Petrus Douw married, at Albany, October 8, 1717, Anna Van Rensselaer, born at her father's home, known as Fort Crailo, Greenbush (Rensselaer, N. Y.); was baptized February 2, 1696, and died at Greenbush, March 29, 1756. Her father was Major Hendrick Van Rensselaer, born in Rensselaerwyck, October 23, 1667, died in Greenbush, July 2, 1740, who married, in New York City, March 19, 1689, Catharina Van Brush, born in New York, baptized there April 19, 1665, died in Greenbush, December 6, 1730. Petrus Douw and Anna Van Rensselaer had nine children, six of whom lived to marry and raise families which became prominent wherever they settled. Children:

  1. Magdalena, born August 1, 1718, died October 12, 1796; married, May 29, 1740, Harmen Gansevoort, son of Leendert (or Leonard) Gansevoort, and Catrina De Wandelaer, who was baptized at Albany, April 20, 1712; died there, March 7, 1801; by whom:
    1. Sara, baptized June 17, 1741;
    2. Petrus, baptized January 16, 1743;
    3. Anna, baptized October 19, 1744;
    4. Anna Gansevoort, died August 9, 1794, aged 49 years 10 months, 3 days;
    5. Catarina, baptized October 25, 1747;
    6. Petrus, baptized July 16, 1749;
    7. Leendert (or Leonard), baptized July 14, 1751;
    8. Hendrick, baptized September 22, 1753;
    9. Hendrick, baptized June 5, 1757;
    10. Catarina, baptized October 15, 1758.
  2. Volckert Petrus, born at Wolvenhoeck, Greenbush, March 23, 1720, died there, March 20, 1801; married, Albany, May 20, 1742, Anna De Peyster (see forward).
  3. Hendrick, born April 13, 1722; died December 17, 1756.
  4. Catrina, born March 23, 1724; died January 1, 1811.
  5. Maria, born December 25,1725; died August 17, 1759; married, December 2, 1750, at Albany, Johannes Gansevoort, son of Leendert Gansevoort and Catrina De Wandelaer, born at Albany, April 3, 1719, baptized (Bible record), April 7, 1721; died at Albany, November 28, 1781; by whom:
    1. Catrina, baptized June 9, 1751;
    2. Leendert, baptized January 14, 1753;
    3. Leendert, born June 3, 1754, died December 16, 1834;
    4. Annatje, baptized July 31, 1757.
  6. Margarita; born October 2, 1729; married, December 21, 1752, Dr. Henricus Van Dyck, son of Cornelis Van Dyck and Maria Bries, who was born October 2, 1726; by whom:
    1. Cornelis, baptized December 9, 1753;
    2. Maria, baptized March 21, 1756;
    3. Anna, baptized November 5, 1758;
    4. Petrus, born April 29, 1760.
  7. Anna, born February 20, 1732, (Bible record); baptized February 5, 1732, (church record); married, Albany, June 3, 1761, Gerardus Beekman, of New York City; by whom:
    1. Petrus Douw, born September 2, 1762, died February 23, 1835, married Hannah ————, who died April 3, 1849, aged eighty-three years;
    2. Jacobus (James), born December 29, 1766;
    3. Gerardus, born August 5, 1767;
    4. Anna, born September 16, 1769, died October 3, 1821;
    5. Maria, born August 18, 1773;
    6. Gerardus, born October 27, 1775.
  8. Elizabeth, born December 1, 1733; married, January 21, 1764, Johannes Beeckman, son of Martin Beeckman and Gertrude Visscher, who was baptized March 11, 1722; will proved July 12, 1790; by whom:
    1. Martin, baptized November 15, 1767, died young;
    2. Petrus, baptized August 19, 1769, died young;
    3. Martin, baptized May 5, 1772;
    4. Petrus, baptized March 15, 1775, married Magdalen Van Rensselaer.
  9. Rageltje, born February 27, 1736, died August 4, 1806.

(V) Mayor Volckert Petrus Douw, eldest son of Captain Petrus Douw and Anna Van Rensselaer, was born at Wolvenhoeck, in Greenbush, Columbia [correction: Rensselaer] county, New York, March 23, 1720, and died there, on March 20, 1801. He was a staunch lifelong friend of General Philip Schuyler, and after his death it was said of him that he was "a true patriot; in civil and domestic relations, he was considered a pattern, and no man in Albany died more regretted."

He was recorded as "a freeman and citizen of the city of Albany," in 1748, then twenty-eight years of age, and the next year he was chosen an alderman of the First ward. His promotion in public affairs was rapid, and for half a century he figured in the principal offices which his fellow townsmen could offer him. He was elected recorder in 1750, and served through 1760. On October 2, 1757, he became presiding judge of the court of common pleas, which position he continued to occupy until May, 1775, and hence was more commonly addressed as Judge Douw. In 1759 he was a member of the colonial assembly, serving until 1766. He was a captain of militia in 1755, participating in the battle of Lunenburg. Considerable interest was taken by him in the Dutch Reformed church, and he was chosen a deacon. He was appointed the twenty-fifth mayor of Albany by Lieutenant-Governor Cadwallader Colden, and served as city's executive from September 29, 1761, until September 9, 1770. His officiate was during most trying times, but he proved himself equal to the occasion, and his acts won admiration.

Although busily engaged by his several public offices, he nevertheless found time to take charge of his large mercantile business, and from time to time was a most influential petitioner with the Lord Commissioners for Trade in seeking needed reforms. He was the owner of a large road house located about seven miles from Albany, on the stage route to Niagara, popularly known as "Douw's Inn." He established and brought to a degree of perfection a glass factory at a place named Douwsborough, and this early attempt to produce glassware for domestic use is said to have resulted in a manufacture superior to that of English make. At this day his endeavors are cited when one writes upon the history of glass-making in America.

By royal appointment he was presiding judge of the court of common pleas; but, regardless of personal consideration, he took a decided stand in the cause of the colonies in opposition to royalty. In May, 1775, he declined to serve any longer, being moved by a patriotic spirit not to hold office under the British government. Because of the unsettled condition of the country at large, few courts were held under the constitution of the state until after the close of the revolution, but in 1778 he was appointed first judge of Albany by the provincial convention. In his opposition to the stamp act he was closely affiliated with Jeremias Van Rensselaer and Philip Schuyler, both of them his intimate friends in Albany, and their tactful speeches did much to turn the tide of feeling on this matter in Albany.

He was appointed an Indian commissioner in 1774, and this was a fresh bond of sympathy drawing him into closer relations with Philip Schuyler, for to the latter's acts is the country much indebted for many important amicable acts on the part of the tribes. He was chosen a delegate on May 5, 1775, to meet in general congress in New York on the twenty-second of that month. On the twenty-third about seventy of the eighty-one delegates assembled at the Exchange in New York City, and organized a provincial congress. They chose Peter Van Brugh for president and Volckert Petrus Douw for vice-president. Mayor Douw was appointed one of the committee of safety in 1775. On July 13, 1755 [1775?], he was appointed one of the board of commissioners for Indian affairs in the northern department, and his associates were General Philip Schuyler, Major Joseph Hawley, Turbot Francis and Oliver Wolcott. A month later he and Francis were sent to hold an important conference with the sachems and warriors of the Six Nations at a place called the German Flatts, west of Albany, then in the wilderness of New York. This was an important incident in his life. The commissioners, on September 1st, in their reply to the speech of "Little Abraham," acceded to the principal requests of the Indians, and informed them that General Schuyler and Commissioner Douw had been appointed to keep the council fires burning bright and to guard the tree of peace at Albany. Schuyler gave orders not to molest the Canadians or Indians, which orders were violated with serious consequences. Upon Schuyler's return to Albany in December, he found sixty members of the Six Nations waiting for him. Mayor Douw was the only other commissioner present, yet the exigencies of the case demanded action, and he conducted the business with complete satisfaction to all concerned. Mayor Douw exhibited a marked concern in the dealings with the Indians, and in the spring of 1776 wrote to General Schuyler as follows: "Mr. Dean came down from Onondaga with the deputies from the seven tribes in Canada who have been to attend the meeting of the Six Nations at their council house at Onondaga. They told me that their clothes were worn out on their long journey on the public business. I told them that I was much convinced of it, and have given them each 1 pr. shoes, 1 pr. buckles and a hat. I told them I would write to General Schuyler to provide them with some clothes, as it would be troublesome to carry them from here to Canada. They were much pleased with it."

Mr. Douw represented congress at the council held in March, 1778, at Johnstown, to secure the neutrality if not the co-operation of the entire body of the Six Nations. This was an important mission and evidenced their faith in him by the appointment. He was made commissary in 1779, and served in the senate from 1785 to 1793.

Judge Douw was a striking character when seen upon the streets of Albany or when in attendance at conferences in other parts of the province. Although he lived more than a century ago, we have an excellent description of him. He was tall and dignified, standing six feet two inches, as straight as an arrow; said by some to be handsome. He had a clean-shaven face, exposing a firm mouth and piercing eyes. He wore his hair in peculiar fashion, probably common to others of his standing in those times, tied in a queue, with his front hair brushed back in severe lines and powdered. He usually wore a longwaisted coat, the skirts reaching nearly to his ankles, which was adorned with large silver buttons made from Spanish coins. Knee breeches, silk stockings, and shoes with silver buckles shining, these set with rhinestones, heightened the general effect; but more prominent than these was his cocked hat. He carried a silver-headed cane, and bore a turnipshaped, silver watch, from which hung a heavy seal, while his tobacco or snuff-box was engraved with initials and coat-of-arms. Other personal effects consisted of a tonguescraper, tooth, ear and nail-pick, which closed within a handle. He was famous as a horseman, and it is said that he never feared to attempt to ride the fiercest animal. On one occasion, when the various chiefs were assembled at Wolvenhoeck, General Schuyler was present at a convivial entertainment and offered to wager that the horse he had ridden to Douw's house could outrun the famous horse of his host, named Sturgeon, although Douw had many times won purses by his fleet steed and was a man disliking to be balked. It is related that this took place in midwinter, but the ice was thin and very slushy on account of heavy rains. Indians, negroes and Dutchrmen cleared a space upon the ice and formed a line with lanterns up and down the river. It was a moment of excitement, with friends of these two men of prominence standing about and cheering lustily, and Judge Douw's horse "Sturgeon" came out victorious amid the yells.

Mr. Douw was the owner of a great many negro slaves, who were devoted to him, and this was manifest by their remaining with him even after the emancipation act in New York state. He had one of pronounced vicious tendencies, Dinah, who set fire to the barn of Leonard Gansevoort, in Albany, which caused the great conflagration of 1793, destroying more than an entire block of the principal houses in the city. She was tried and hanged in the presence of a multitude gathered around the gallows erected on Pinxter Hill.

Judge Douw was once a prisoner, after being captured by the British, and was confined in Quebec. While there he learned the French language. He had been in the habit of employing a body-servant. As commissary he set out to join the army at "Old" Saratoga, followed by his man, "King Charles," on horseback. Suddenly there was a rumpus outside the stockade gate and "King Charles" was found calling loudly for assistance, and ready with his invented tale of woe that his master had been attacked. It turned out that the timid negro had seen some distance off a sumach waving in the wind and imagined he had seen the red plume of a savage headgear. When he had fled in fear he told the story to avoid threats for cowardice.

With all the Indians who came to Albany he was on most friendly terms, and this stood him in good stead when he had to meet them on his official business. All the chiefs of the Six Nations were not only well known by him, but many of them had been welcomed as guests at his home. The famous Red jacket was one of those who valued his acquaintance. When one of his daughters died, the Six Nations sent him a belt of condolence as a proof of their sympathy.

Mayor Volckert Petrus Douw married, at Albany, May 20, 1742, Anna De Peyster, born at Albany, March 28, 1723, died at Wolvenhoeck, Greenbush (Rensselaer, N. Y.), June 14, 1794. Her father was Mayor Johannes De Peyster of Albany, born in New Amsterdam, January 10, 1694, died at Albany, February 27, 1789, married, at Albany, November 24, 1715, Anna Schuyler (daughter of Mayor Myndert Schuyler), born in Albany, February 27, 1697, died at Albany, September 13, 1750. Children:

  1. Anna, born March 25, 1743, died at Albany, February 18, 1774, without issue: married, Albany, November 25, 1761, Dirck Ten Broeck, born, Albany, July 26, 1738, died at Albany, May 29, 1780, son of Mayor Dirck Ten Broeck (born Albany, December 4, 1686; died Albany, January 3, 1751), and his wife, Margarita Cuyler (born Albany, October 26, 1692, died May 24, 1783), whom he married, Albany, November 26, 1714.
  2. Ragel (Rachel), born February 8, 1744, died August 27, 1799; married, Albany, November 17, 1765, Hendrick Johannes Van Rensselaer, born October 24, 1742, son of Johannes Van Rensselaer (bap. Jan. 11, 1708), who married, Albany, January 3, 1734, Engeltje (Angelica) Livingston (bap. July 17, 1698); by whom:
    1. Johannes, born March 8, 1768;
    2. Engeltje, July 21, 1770;
    3. Anna, January 31, 1773.
  3. Myndert Schuyler, born December 12, 1746; died August 4, 1747.
  4. Magdalena, born October 10, 1748; died October 8, 1749.
  5. Madalena, born May 25, 1750, died December 20, 1817; married, Albany, August 30, 1770, John Stevenson, born March 2, 1734, died, Albany, April 24, 1810, son of James Stevenson (buried, Albany, June 6, 1744), who married, December 9, 1729, Sara Groenendyck (born Apr. 28, 1700, died June 5, 1774); by whom:
    1. Catharina, born Albany, January 6, 1779;
    2. Mayor James Stevenson, born Albany, November 25, 1788, died Albany, July 3, 1852.
  6. Catrienna, born November 6, 1751, died October 25, 1775; married, Harmanus Hoffman; by whom: Martinus, born August 1, 1792.
  7. John De Peyster, born May 6, 1754, died July 25, 1755.
  8. Johannes De Peyster, born January 20, 1756, died February 22, 1835; married (first), December 23, 1787, Deborah Beeckman; (second), December 20, 1795, Margaret Livingston; (third) January 22, 1811, Catherine Douw Gansevoort (see forward).
  9. Maria, born October 4, 1760, died March 12, 1818; married, January 20, 1782, Johannes De Peyster Ten Eyck, died April 9, 1798, son of Tobias Coenraedt Ten Eyck, of Schenectady, and Rachel De Peyster; by whom: John De Peyster, born May 3, 1788.

(VI) Johannes De Peyster Douw, son of Mayor Volckert Petrus Douw and Anna De Peyster, was born January 20, 1756, and died in Albany, February 22, 1835. He was a graduate of Yale, class of 1777. On April 4, 1782, he was appointed surrogate of Albany county, and in 1788 was elected an alderman. He had a notable military career, making him prominent aside from political office, social position and wealth, participating in Sullivan's expedition against the Indians of Western New York in 1779.

Johannes De Peyster Douw married (first), Albany, December 23, 1787, Deborah Beeckman, with one child as result of this union. She was born November 26, 1763, died July 23, 1791, daughter of Mayor Johannes Jacobse Beeckman (b. Albany, bap. Nov. 8, 1733; d. Dec. 17, 1802), who married, November 22, 1759, Maria Sanders (bap. Schenectady, June 4, 1740; d. Nov. 2, 1804). He married (second), December 20, 1795, Margaret Livingston, by whom three children. She was born June 3, 1768, died January 21, 1802, daughter of Colonel Peter Robert Livingston (b. Apr. 27, 1737; d. Nov. 15, 1794), who married, June 6, 1758, Margaret Livingston (b. July 4, 1738; d. July 31, 1809). He married (third), January 22, 1811, Catherine Douw Gansevoort, by whom four children. She was born at Albany, May 11, 1782, died at Albany, April 13, 1848, daughter of Leonard Gansevoort, Jr. (b. June 3, 1754, d. Dec. 16, 1834), who married, April 17, 1777, Maria Van Rensselaer (bap. Oct. 19, 1760, d. Apr. 2, 1842). Children:

  1. Volckert Petrus Douw, born April 10, 1790, died at Albany, June 16, 1869; married, June 2, 1834, Helen Louis Franchot (see forward).
  2. Ann De Peyster, born January 31, 1797, died at Albany, August 15, 1871; married (first), October 31, 1814, Samuel Stringer Lush; married (second) Colonel William Tremper Cuyler, May 9, 1850, who was born at Albany, December 22, 1802, died at Cuylerville, New York, December 21, 1864, son of John Cornelius Cuyler and Hannah Maley. By her first husband she had two children who died young; by her second husband, no issue.
  3. Margaret Livingston, born November 26, 1798, died at Albany, April 5, 1878; married, Albany, November 14, 1844, Alanson Abbe, M. D., of Boston, Massachusetts; no issue.
  4. Louisa, born July 11, 1802; died April 20, 1802.
  5. John De Peyster, born Albany, December 16, 1812; died at Poughkeepsie, New York, January 30, 1901; married (first), Albany, April 12, 1837, Margaret Schuyler Van Rensselaer, born at Albany, May 12, 1819, died Albany, September 15, 1897, daughter of Hon. Stephen Van Rensselaer and Harriet Elizabeth Bayard; married (second), at Norwich, Connecticut, March 16, 1854, Marianne Chandler Lanman, born November 13, 1826, died at Poughkeepsie, March 18, 1884, daughter of Hon. Charles James Lanman and Marie Jeanne Guie. By the first marriage two children; by the second, five children.
  6. Mary, born September 3, 1815; died September 28, 1816.
  7. Catherine Louisa, born September 10, 1817; died August 3, 1891; married, at Albany, September 10, 1836, John Fondey Townsend, M. D., Albany, born March 10, 1809, died at New York, January 8, 1874, son of John De Kay Townsend and Maria Hun; had thirteen children.
  8. Harriet Maria, born June 13, 1824, died March 28, 1852; married, Nov. 1, 1847, William Clarkson Johnson; by whom one child.

(VII) Volckert Peter Douw, son of Johannes De Peyster Douw and Deborah Beeckman, was born at Albany, April 10, 1790, and died at Albany, June 17, 1869. He fully inherited the distinguishing features and the practical virtues of his ancestry. He was "kind in heart, good in purpose, genial in disposition, generous in sentiment and severely honest in conduct," according to the estimate of him published in the Albany Journal of that date, which also says: "Though ever active in his pursuits, his tastes did not incline him to public display or official recognition. He chose the path of unostentatious business, of social happiness and domestic peace, and this he pursued with zest and zeal. He was educated to the calling of a merchant, as his father before him, and kept his store upon the same spot that his father had before him, on the corner of Broadway and State street. He retired from active business many years since devoting a reasonable share of his time to the care of his estate, which, by inheritance from his father and his uncle, as well as by his own acquisitions, had aggregated to a large amount. No other family had a more honorable record."

He married, June 2, 1834, Helen Louis Franchot, born at Butternuts (now Morris), Otsego county, New York, September 17, 1808, died at Albany, November 16, 1883, daughter of Pascal Franchot and Catherine Hansen Franchot, of Butternuts, New York. Children:

  1. Deborah Matilda, born at Albany, April 19, 1835; residing in Albany in 1911; became a missionary to China, and was present in the city of Peking throughout the terrible Boxer uprising and siege of 1898, after which she returned to Albany.
  2. Captain John De Peyster, born at Albany, March 10, 1837, died at Winchester, Virginia, October 26, 1864. He entered the service during the civil war, enlisting in the summer of 1862, and excepting a furlough of a few days was never absent from his command. His military record is that of his regiment attached to the celebrated Sixth Army Corps, whose history was one of continuous battles. He was wounded October 19, 1864, at the battle of Cedar Creek, Shenandoah Valley, suffered amputation of the right leg on the 22nd, and died on the 26th.
  3. Pascal Franchot, born at Albany, February 18, 1840, died August 28, 1841.
  4. Volckert Peter, born at Wolvenhook* (* In recent years the homestead has been known as Wolvenhook), August 15, 1842, died at Albany, November 9, 1875; married, New York, December 3, 1870, Ella Brooks Gould, who died June 5, 1889, daughter of John P. Gould and Caroline E. Brooks Gould; by whom: John De Peyster, born at Wolvenhook, August 18, 1873, was made mayor of Annapolis, Maryland, 1905, married, October 20, 1896, Harriet Rooker Tate, of Annapolis, and had:
    1. Julia Agnes, born July 29, 1897;
    2. Helen Louise, born March 4, 1899;
    3. Volckert Petrus, born March 4, 1907.
  5. Beeckman, born at Wolvenhook, February 21, 1844, died at Butternuts. New York, September 5, 1845.
  6. Helen Franchot, born at Wolvenhook, March 31, 1846, died Albany, January 28, 1898; married, at Albany, October 27, 1870, John Townsend Lansing, born at Sachems Head, Conn., son of Charles Bridgen Lansing and Catherine Clinton Townsend; no issue.
  7. Anna de Peyster, born at Wolvenhook, March 22, 1848; married, at Albany, May 3, 1877, George Douglas Miller, born at Rochester, New York, November 5, 1847, son of Samuel Miller and Mary Ann Douglas (see George Douglas Miller).
  8. Julia Agnes, born at Wolvenhook, June 21, 1851, died at Albany, April 11, 1885.

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